Destination D.C.

DC's not just Julie and Ben's home. It's also a great place to visit. If you have some time to spare while you're in town, here are some of Julie and Ben's favorite places.

Coffee

Since Ben and Julie realize that they are happiest when caffeinated, they love to check out these local coffee shops.

You can find Ben working from this coffee shop most Fridays. For something different and refreshing, try their espresso tonic.
This coffee shop was recommended by Ben's best man Jacob. We were thrilled when they opened two new locations in DC this past winter.
The beans from this coffee shop are roasted just a few blocks from Ben and Julie's house. Local and veteran-owned, they are also the coffee supplier for the Park Hyatt.
Ben originally introduced Julie to this coffee shop after trying it in San Francisco. They make every cup to order to ensure it is just right.
Based in Philadelphia near Julie's grandparents, they offer great iced coffee and lattes on tap. Be sure to check out the location down an alley.
The only thing better than the lattes at this bakery and coffee shop are the cupcakes. For a sweet treat Ben and Julie recommend the strawberry cupcake and a dirty chai latte.

Food and Drink

Looking for something to eat? Julie and Ben love trying new restaraunts, and these are some of their favorite.

This local italian restaurant is Ben and Julie's local pizza shop. Some of their favorite dates are sitting at the bar, sharing the Ghibellina salad and a margharita pizza (with extra garlic, of course).
One of Ben and Julie's first dates was at this wine bar that recently rennovated into a shared market and restaurant. They highly recommend the avocado toast and ever-changing old-world wine flights.
Located in an old bank building a block from the White House, this Chicago-based seafood and steak restaurant offers some of the best macaroni and cheese in DC. If you stop in, be sure to get their famous key lime pie.
For those guests looking for a fancy dinner out, the food and service at the DC location of this Chicago-based Italian restaurant can't be beat. Ben and Julie highly recommed the garlic bread and eggplant parmesan, over which they began planning their wedding.
The answer to the question "what do you want for dinner" is often this casual restaurant which offers lighter takes on Thai food within a few blocks of Julie and Ben's house.
DC's oldest restaraunt, founded in 1856, Old Ebbitt is a classic DC institution with a diverse menu sure to please. For a quieter meal, head to the back of the restaurant where the semi-hidden "Grant's Bar" is located.
This "speakeasy" style bar located below Doi Moi has the most creative cocktails in DC. Choose any of the cocktails on the hand-illustrated menu (which changes weekly) or ask the knowledgable bartenders for a recommendation to find your new favorite new way to celebrate.
José Andrés is a star in the DC restaurant scene. Any of his DC restaurants (Jaleo, Oyamel, Zaytina, China Chilcano) offer great small plates and a fun atmosphere.

Activities

If you find yourself with extra time in DC, Ben and Julie recommend filling it with any of the following fun things to do.

These museums are free to the public and a great way to spend a day. Julie and Ben's favorites are the National Air and Space Museum, the National Museum of American Hstory, and the National Portrait Gallery. The Kogod Courtyard, located in between the National Portrait Gallery and the Smithsonian American Art Museum, in particular is one of Ben and Julie's favorite places in DC.
Although Bao Bao is no longer at the zoo in DC, it's still fun to walk through and see the Giant Pandas and other animals. One of Ben and Julie's favorite dates every year is walking through "Zoo Lights" around the holidays.
During college Julie worked for this museum dedicated to First Amendment rights. Check out the "Today's Front Pages" exhibit outside and for one of the best photo spots in DC, the Greenspan Family Terrace.
See in person the monuments that make the DC skyline so distinct. Julie and Ben highly recommend going at night and sitting on the steps of the Lincoln memorial.
For a throwback to one of Ben and Julie's early dates, check out the US Botanical Gardens. Filled with beautiful and scenic blooms, this landmark is a fun diversion from the usual tourist spots (and is especially warm in March).
For those that consider eating and drinking an activity, this food hall located near the NPR headquarters offers a wide variety of vendors well worth a visit. Stop by for a bite to eat such as a bagel with smoked egg salad or korean tacos and check out some of DC's diverse new offerings.
If you are driving to the wedding, Ben and Julie recommend making a detour to one of the many wineries located nearby in Virginia. Some of their favorites include Stone Tower Winery (where they celebrated Ben's 30th birthday and took their engagement photos), Greenhill Winery, and Delaplane Cellars, each about 45 minutes outside the city.